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Mission of Love in Quarantine

So you, too, must show love to foreigners, for you yourselves were once foreigners in the land of Egypt.” – Deuteronomy 10:19

This is the anchor verse that Indra and Estherhold very closely to their hearts.  

Showing love to foreigners in a strange land is what compels their ministry as a husband-and-wife team leading Covenant EFC’s Indonesian Fellowship. 

But during this pandemic, how could this possibly come about in this time of restricted physical gatherings?   

Open Doors

God opened the doors. In January this year, there were increasing numbers of Indonesian domestic workers being temporarily quarantined at Community Care Facilities after testing positive for COVID-19 upon arrival.  

From the perspective of these domestic workers, it is certainly fearful enough to arrive in a new country not knowing what to expect. Compounded with the fear of COVID-19 and being quarantined in unfamiliar quarters, it was a very difficult time for many of them.

Through divine connections, Project Nurisa was born.

Project Nurisa, an engagement programme for these domestic workers, aims to love and give hope through befriending. This Covenant-led humanitarian initiative was done in collaboration with other churches’ Indonesian fellowship network. Aside from Indra and Esther, it is supported by 18 other volunteers.

“When these domestic workers get quarantined, they are not able to do much. We want to reach out and listen to their stories using their own language. They can share a lot more when they are able to do so in their native tongue,” Esther said.

It is held online every week and comprises several activities ranging from art therapy in stress management, basic English lessons, talks on family financial management and Right’s Protection by Indonesian Embassy, among others.

Seeing God Work

Through this humanitarian work, Indra and Esther believe that it opened another platform for them to share God’s love — whether by lending a listening ear or helping them process their personal struggles 
 
It really warms and encourages the volunteers when the domestic workers are so receptive to us. In all of these, we really see how God works, Esther shared.   
 
She smiled as she recalled a divine encounter where one of the ladies opened up for deeper conversation. Over time, this worker was keen to understand more. This was one of the many joyous moments experienced over the past months. 

Facing Constraints

Things were not all smooth-sailingThere were certainly challenges faced over the course of the project such as coming up with an engaging programme curriculum, tight resource planning, finding suitable speakers, and gathering sufficient volunteers within a stipulated time frame 
 
However, Indra and Esther recognised that this was not about them. It wasn’t about the fatigue or the constraints. It was ultimately about God  sharing His love and doing His Kingdom work. 

Ongoing Mission of Love

With this in mind, Project Nurisa is designed to be an ongoing humanitarian outreach. Along with other volunteers, the couple continued keeping in close contact with the domestic workers through Whatsapp and Facebook groups even after their departure from the facilities.   

Through this project, both Indra and Esther’s eyes were opened to the many more in need. This leaves us with a sobering reminder that missions can always start from home — and our home mission is to love people. 

“We thank God for this opportunity that we can have an additional avenue to serve, love others and give hope. As we serve and show God’s love, we ourselves receive joy from the Lord,” the couple reflected. 

What’s the first step we can take? “Be sensitive to the needs of others around you, and be ready to step up and help when the need arises,” said Indra.

 


Grace Tan

Grace Tan worships at BPJ Centre, and enjoys a good read, the sounds of nature and a night breeze. She is presently serving in the CG and Hokkien Ministry.

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Daily Devo

Daily Devotional Journal

Scripture:
1 Samuel 23:10-14
Sat, 25 September 2021

Security in “Keilah” Discipleship Journey

Observation:

What significant observations can you make about God in verses 10 to 14?

Deeper Reflection
DAVID’S “KEILAH” discipleship journey (1 Sam 23:1-13) begins with David fighting for Keilah to save their lives (vv.1-5), but ironically, it ends with David fleeing from Keilah to save his own life (vv.12-13). When God spoke to David about saving Keilah from the Philistines, He gave him this assurance: “I will give the Philistines into your hand” (v.4). God kept His word and David delivered Keilah with a great slaughter of the Philistines (v.5). Then when David inquired of God if Keilah would surrender him to Saul, God’s word to him was just “They will surrender you” (v.12) – and nothing more. There was no promise of deliverance. No word of direction. No word as to what David should do next. All David and his troops did next was they “departed from Keilah and they went wherever they could go” (v.13). But the narrator calls for eyes of faith to see God’s presence and providence in this “wherever they could go”, which appears to speak of lostness and uncertainty. David faced almost constant danger from Saul, but he always “escaped” (v.13) – a continuity of David’s “escape” journey (1 Sam 19:10, 12, 17, 18; 22:1). Keilah would surrender David “into the hand of Saul” (vv.11-12), but “God did not deliver him into his hand”, even though Saul “sought him every day” (v.14). David might be going “wherever they could go” with Saul pursuing him “every day”, but he was secure in God’s hand.
Application:

How will I live in situations when all I can do is to go wherever I could go?

Prayer:
Write a prayer to God as your response from your meditation on and application of the Scriptures.
Prayer Pointers:
  • Give thanks and praise:
  • For Church Board: To walk under God’s hand in uncertain times
  • Pray for significant people:
  • Pray for those in need:
  • Pray for self:

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